‘Prayers aren’t enough;’ faith leaders call for action on gun control

June 16, 2016 | WISHTV8 | Link to Article


INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) –  Calling for an end to gun violence was the focus of a prayer vigil Thursday afternoon in downtown Indianapolis.

Every major denomination was represented. They said they came wanting to show solidarity.

Specifically, they said they want a ban on the AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, better background checks, and to ban people who are on the terror watch list from buying guns.

This vigil was organized in response to the massacre in Orlando.   But they said violence happens everyday here at home.

Those in attendance said enough is enough.

“Every life matters so the violence has to cease,” said Deborah Brown, who attended the vigil.

“What is a church except a place that is a place of love and peace? Shalom. Salem and all of our different traditions we call for peace,” said Stephen Carlsen, the dean of Christ Church Cathedral where the vigil was held.

Forty faith leaders from across the state packed into the cathedral.

They read the names of each of the 49 dead in the attack in Orlando, and lit candles in their honor.

“I’ve climbed the pulpit after Sandy Hook, Columbine, after San Bernardino and just calling for prayers and mourning isn’t enough. It’s actually time to call for action. We can do something about this and we must,” said Carlsen.

“We need to do something about it, we can’t let it happen again,” said Erick Gama, who attended vigil, and says he now fears for his safety. “I do take it personally and now I live in fear of being attacked. It could’ve been my friends it could’ve been me.”

“With the prayer vigils that we have, coming together, brings power. because it’s one voice, one sound,” said Brown.

Some of their calls may have already been answered, a 14-hour filibuster by Democrats in the US Senate ended Thursday morning after a promise to vote on gun control measures.

Meanwhile, the NRA has responded to a call to ban the AR-15.  For more on the NRA’s response, click here.